Showing posts from May, 2014


Urbane  [  ur-BEYN   ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   polite, refined and sophisticated in manner.   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   At the start of the new term the teacher addressed the children in an urbane tone so as to befriend rather than intimidate the class.


Pertinacious  [  pur-tn-EY-shuh’ s  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   1. stubborn, obstinate or unyielding 2. resolute or tenacious   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   Her pertinacious, pro-communist views irked the audience.


Bard  [  bahrd  ]   [  noun, transitive verb  ]   MEANING :   1. (n.) a celtic poet who played the lyre or harp while reciting poems 2. (n.) a poet 3. (n.) a piece of armour that is placed on the back of a horse 4. (tr.v.) to place bards on a horse   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   A bard was called forth to entertain the assembled guests.


Unearth  [  uhn-URTH   ]   [  transitive verb  ]   MEANING :   1. to dig up out of the earth 2. to uncover or bring to public notice   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   Fossils of some prehistoric creature were unearthed at the excavation site.


Pert  [  purt  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   1. saucy, bold or impudent 2. vivacious, stylish or chic 3. lively or stimulating   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The sales girl gave the customer a pert look which intrigued him.


Incursion  [  in-KUR-zhuh’ n, -shuh’ n  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   an invasion, inroad, intrusion or raid   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The armed incursion into Kargil by Pakistani troops in 1998 was successfully repulsed by the Indian army.


Unencumbered  [  uhn-en-KUHM- berd  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   1. not having cares or responsibilities 2. property that is not subject to the claims of creditors or liens   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   Having renounced worldly possessions, he entered the seminary unencumbered.

Joie de vivre

Joie de vivre [ ˌʒwɑː də ˈviːvr(ə) ] MEANING: Exuberant enjoyment of life EXAMPLE: they seem to be filled with joie de vivre

De Facto

De Facto [ deɪ ˈfaktəʊ ] MEANING: In fact, whether by right or not: USAGE EXAMPLE: the country was de facto divided between two states


Conscientious  [  kon-shee-EN- shuh's  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   1. scrupulous or controlled by the conscience 2. painstaking or thorough   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   He received the employee of the year award because he was conscientious and hard working.


Artifice  [  AHR-tuh-fis  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   1. wile, stratagem, or a sly trick 2. trickery, cunningness or craftiness 3. ingenuity, skill or inventiveness   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The high school drama was his directional debut, full of artifice and panache. 


Utilitarian  [  yoo-til-i-TAIR- ee-uh’n  ]   [  noun, adjective  ]   MEANING :   1. (adj.) useful rather than beautiful 2. (n.) one who practices utilitarianism   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   He was advised to choose utilitarian equipment for the camping trip.


Introspection  [  in-truh'-SPEK- shuh'n  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   1. (n) the act of examining one's conscience   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   This is a book that invites introspection from established groups, possibly even navel gazing


Saunter  [  SAWN-ter, SAHN-  ]   [  transitive verb  ]   MEANING :   1. (tr.v.) to walk or stroll in a relaxed manner or with a gentle gait 2. (n.) a relaxed, gentle gait 3. (n.) a stroll or unhurried, relaxed walk   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   He sauntered around the park to gain her attention.


Mottled  [  MOT-ld  ] [  adjective  ] MEANING : spotted, blotched or streaked with different colours USAGE EXAMPLE 1 : His mottled locks were eye-catching.


Browbeat  [  BROU-beet   ]   [  transitive verb  ]   MEANING :   1. to intimidate by a domineering manner 2. to bully or scare into complying with 3. to coerce or badger   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The lawyer received a warning after the witness was browbeaten by him.


Stymie  [  STAHY-mee  ] [  noun, transitive verb  ] MEANING : 1. (tr.v.) to hinder, thwart or stand in one's way as an obstacle 2. (n.) an obstacle, impediment or obstruction 3. (n.) (golf) a condition when the ball (tee) of the opponent serves as an obstacle between the current player's ball (tee) and the hole USAGE EXAMPLE 1 : Her efforts were stymied by her opponents.


Ire  [  ahy-uh'-r  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   1. extreme anger 2. rage   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   It took a lot of effort on their part to assuage his ire.


Woo  [  woo  ] [  intransitive verb, transitive verb  ] MEANING : 1. (tr.v.) to seek love or affection esp. with the intention of marriage 2. (tr.v.) to solicit, urge or entreat 3. (tr.v.) to seek or try to get 4. (intr.v.) to court a woman USAGE EXAMPLE: The poor peasant boy wooed the rich merchant's daughter.


Bovine  [  BOH-vahyn  ]   [  noun, adjective  ]   MEANING :   1. (adj.) pertaining to cattle 2. (adj.) ox like 3. (n.) cattle   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   He was a veterinarian who specialized in bovine diseases.


Arduous  [  Brit., ahr-dyoo-uh's, ahr-joo-uh' s  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   1. onerous, laborious, strenuous or difficult 2. steep or difficult to climb   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   It was an arduous journey.


Neopotism [ ˈnɛpətɪz(ə)m ] The practice among those with power or influence of favouring relatives or friends, especially by giving them jobs. Example:  H is years in office were marked by corruption and nepotism.


Esoteric  [  es-uh'-TER-ik  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   1. understood by or designed for only a select few 2. requiring or showcasing special knowledge that is revealed only to a small group 3. private; confidential 4. of a rare, special, or unusual interest   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The esoteric seminar on “the relevance of the Upanishads in present day society” attracted a sparse audience.


Eccentricity  [  ek-suh'n-TRIS- i-tee  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   1. a peculiarity or an oddity 2. idiosyncrasy or the quality of being strangely odd 3. a deviation from the normal or the expected   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   M. F. Hussain the famous artist is also noted for his eccentricity.


Cleave  [  kleev  ]   [  intransitive verb, transitive verb  ]   MEANING :   1. (tr.v.) to penetrate or pierce 2. (tr.v.) to divide, disunite or split 3. (intr.v.) to split or fall apart 4. (intr.v.) to cling or adhere closely   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The JCB machine cleaved a path through the dense jungle so that a road could be built which connected the two villages.


Iconoclast  [  ahy-KON-uh'-klast  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   1. a person who destroys religious images or objects to their worship 2. a person who attacks prejudices, beliefs or institutions that are based on superstitions or erroneous rationale   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   Only an iconoclast like Raja Rammohan Roy could have succeeded in abolishing sati from Hindu society.


Axiom  [  AK-see-uh'm  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   1. a maxim or universally accepted truth 2. a principle, rule or law that is established and universally accepted 3. a postulate or a proposition that is assumed to be true without proof for the purpose of studying the resulting consequences   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   A Russian mathematician devised three axioms that expound the theory of probability. 


Allure  [  uh'LOOR  ]   [  noun, intransitive verb, transitive verb  ]   MEANING :   1. (n.) the power to lure 2. (n.) enticement 3. (intr. v.) to be very attractive 4. (tr. v.) to use something desirable as bait to attract   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   He invested his life's savings in gold bonds because of the allure of the yellow metal.


Arabesque  [  ar-uh'-BESK  ] [  noun, adjective  ] MEANING : 1. (n.) a posture in ballet where the dancer bends forward with one arm and leg extended forward and the other arm and leg extended backwards 2. (n.) an ornate, complex design with intricate geometric, floral and foliate figures 3. (n.) a whimsical, fanciful musical piece esp. one for the piano 4. (adj.) elaborate or like or characterised by an arabesque USAGE EXAMPLE 1 : The ballerina was asked to finish the ballet with an arabesque.


Epilogue  [  EP-uh'-lawg, -log  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   1. a speech or poem recited at the conclusion of a play 2. one who delivers the speech or poem at the end of a play 3. a short section appended to the conclusion of a piece of literary work like a novel   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The epilogue was set nearly nineteen years in the future.

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